1 Happiness

Based on research by: Ed Deiner, Ph.D.  Psychology Science Minute written by: Dr. Sarah Arnett

Hello there and welcome to the School of Psychology’s very first Psychology Science Minute! We will be posting our weekly Minutes here as heard on WFIT. You can listen to us, read our Minutes and even share us on Facebook. We hope that you enjoy this educational experience and ask that you share your feedback with us as well as offer future suggestions. Please enjoy our first blog about hindsight bias.

Psychology Science Minute brought to you by the School of Psychology at Florida Institute of Technology, I’m Dr. Sarah Arnett, Psy.D.

“Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.” Groucho Marx

Is there merit in the words of Groucho Marx? Well according to research the answer is “yes.” Dr. Ed Deiner a leading researcher on happiness has found that happier people are not only healthier but live longer.1 Science suggests that happiness leads to more resilience and better performance at work as well.2

Are people born happy or can you learn to find the happiness you seek in your life? YES! We can take action to be happier. Deiner has found that there are factors associated with increased feelings of happiness. The wider and deeper our relationships with others are, the happier we feel.3 Research shows that friendships have a larger impact on happiness than a person’s income.4 Believe in something bigger than yourself and have goals connected to your long term values.Have meaning and purpose in your life.6  Keep a gratitude diary: each day write down 3-5 things  for which you are grateful.5

That’s your Florida Tech Psychology Science Minute. I’m Dr. Sarah Arnett.


Diener, E. Weiting N., Harter,J.& Arora, R.(2010). Wealth and Happiness Across the World: Material Prosperity Predicts Life Evaluation, Whereas Psychosocial Prosperity Predicts Positive Feeling. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 2010, Vol. 99, No. 1, 52–61

Diener, E., Kuppens, P., & Realo,A. (2008). The Role of Positive and Negative Emotions in Life Satisfaction Judgment Across Nations. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol. 95, No. 1, 66–75.

Diener, E., Lyubomirsky,S., & King,L. (2005). The Benefits of Frequent Positive Affect:  Does Happiness Lead to Success? Psychological bulletin, Vol. 131, No. 6, 803–855

Lyubomirsky, S. (2001). Why are some people happier than others? The role of cognitive and motivational processes in well-being. American Psychologist, 56, 239-249.

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